June 13, 2005
McGee takes TdS Stage 3; Ullrich holds lead
McGee, from cyclingnews.com gallery
Australia's Brad McGee is looking well-prepared for the Tour, as he took a sprint win on Stage 3 at the Tour of Switzerland today. Jan Ullrich continued in the race's overall lead, but McGee now sits just 2 seconds back, followed by Michael Rogers at 18 seconds.
In 2003, McGee won the Tour prologue, but then abandoned, complaining of metabolic problems; later tests suggested he was making too much insulin, screwing up his blood sugar levels.
At one point, McGee said 2005 was the year when he thought he could win the Tour's overall title; his good form has got to at least make him a favorite in this year's prologue.
Olympic champion Paolo Bettini didn't take the start this morning, blaming stomach problems.
"For the first time I started training for the Tour de France last October," he said. "I am continuing to make progress and in fact I think I am ahead of schedule."
Picking up the DP commentary as Koldo Gil is trying a late breakaway:
But unfortunately for him, there was a certain German wearing a certain yellow thingy around today. And "wearing" two great legs too, by the way: Jan Ullrich drove the chasing bunch into Sankt Anton, and poor Koldo was brought back with just 500m left. Then it was time for the sprint, and for Brad McGee to get proper reward for the perfect race he rode today.
There were some notable performances with the Tour de France in mind. Spaniards Iban Mayo and Alejandro Valverde were both prominent in the front group, while Sinkewitz’s Quick Step team-mate Michael Rogers was also up there. Missing, though, was Joseba Beloki, who finished almost six minutes down and is now very short of time in which to rediscover his best form.